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Thursday, July 3, 2008

Video Games in Health Care

It's becomes clear that games can have a positive effect on health, whether by helping to improve kids' fitness levels, or by being used as physical rehabilitation tool for the elderly.

These are just two examples of video games used in health care in a recent post on BBC News: Video games get into shape.

In summary video games are used in:

  • A motivational and education tool towards a healthier lifestyle

  • Virtual reality games as a form of pain control for burns patients

  • Virtual environments can be very useful for treating patients suffering from "phantom limb" experiences following amputations

  • Virtual reality systems to help treat some of the many Iraq war veterans who return home with post-traumatic stress disorder

  • Games are being used to treat migraine, based on research into neurofeedback treatment techniques

  • Virtual clinic for training doctors and nurses to deal with the injuries caused by large-scale natural disasters or on the battlefield

  • Surgeons who frequently play ordinary videogames make more than a third fewer mistakes in simulations of laparoscopic surgery than those who don't

You can read more about these roles of games in health care here

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